This Forum is Closed
November 21, 2019, 03:12:55 pm
Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
News: GGF now has a permanent home: http://forum.globalgulag.com
 
  Home Help Search Links Staff List Login Register  

PAKISTAN : Daily stuff here please......

Pages: [1] 2   Go Down
  Print  
Author Topic: PAKISTAN : Daily stuff here please......  (Read 2218 times)
bigron
Moderator
Hero Member
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 549



View Profile
« on: October 04, 2010, 09:06:06 am »

MISSION CREEP IN AFPAK

by Eric S. Margolis

http://www.ericmargolis.com/political_commentaries/mission-creep-in-afpak.aspx

October 3, 2010

The focus of the Afghan War is clearly shifting south into Pakistan, drawing that nation and the United States forces ever closer to a direct confrontation. This grim development was as predictable as it was inevitable.

In fact, this writer has been warning for years that US and NATO efforts to defeat resistance by Afghanistanís fierce Pashtun tribes to Western occupation would eventually lead to spreading the conflict into neighboring Pakistan, a nation of 175 million.

Last week, Pakistan temporarily closed the main US/NATO supply route from Karachi to the Afghan border at Torkham after the killing of three Pakistani soldiers by US helicopter gunships. Two US/NATO fuel supply convoys were burned by anti-American militants.

Eighty percent of the supplies of the US-led forces in Afghanistan come up this long, difficult route. Along the way, the US pays large bribes to Pakistani officials, local warlords, and to Taliban. The cost of a gallon of gas delivered to US units in Afghanistan has risen to $800.

US helicopter gunships have staged at least four attacks on Pakistan this past week alone, in addition to the mounting number of strikes by CIA drones that are inflicting heavy casualties on civilians and tribal militants alike. US special forces and CIA-run Afghan mercenaries are also increasingly active along Pakistanís northwest frontier.

Pakistanís feeble government has long closed its eyes to CIAís drone attacks. Washington does not even seek permission for the raids or give advance warning to Islamabad. Pakistani civilians bear the brunt of the attacks.

The failing government in Islamabad is caught between two fires. Pakistanis are furious and humiliated by the American attacks. Each new assault further undermines the inept, US-installed Zardari government. Even Interior Minister Rehman Malik, the governmentís strongman, protested last weekís US attacks.

But Pakistan is on the edge of economic collapse after its devastating floods. Islamabad is now totally reliant on $2 billion annual US aid, plus tens of millions more "black" payments from CIA. Washington has given Islamabad $10 billion since 2001, most of which goes to financing 140,000 Pakistani troops to join the US-led Afghan war.

As Osama bin Laden just pointed out in a new audio tape, the Muslim nations have been derelict in coming to Pakistanís aid. He blamed the massive flooding in Pakistan on global warming.

An influential former Pakistani chief of staff, Gen. Mirza Aslam Beg, just demanded Pakistanís air force shoot down US drones and helicopters violating his nationís sovereignty. His sentiments are widely shared in Pakistanís increasingly angry military.

Pakistanís senior generals are being blasted as "American stooges" by some of the media and are losing respect among Pakistanis. A video this week of the execution of six civilians by army troops has further damaged the armyís good name.

However, Washingtonís view is very different. Pakistan is increasingly branded insubordinate, ungrateful for billions in aid, and a potential enemy of US regional interests. Many Americans consider Pakistan more of a foe than ally. The limited US financial response to Pakistanís flood was a sign of that nationís poor repute in North America.

Fears are growing in Washington that the nine-year Afghan War may be lost. American popular opinion has turned against the war. The Pentagon fears a failure in Afghanistan will humiliate the US military and undermine Americaís international power. In short, just what happened to the Soviet Union in Afghanistan.

Americaís foreign policy establishment is venting its anger and frustration over the failing Afghan War by lashing out at Pakistan and the US-installed Karzai regime in Kabul.

Pakistanís President, Asif Ali Zardari, is seen in Washington as hopeless and incompetent. Full US attention is now on Pakistanís military, the de facto government, and its respected but embattled commander, Gen. Ashfaq Kayani, whose tenure was just extended under US pressure. Kayani is still regarded as an "asset" by Washington. But like Zardari, he is caught between American demands and outraged Pakistanis Ė plus concerns about the threat from India and Delhiís machinations in Afghanistan. The recent upsurge of violence in Indian-ruled Kashmir has intensified these dangerous tensions.

The neoconservative far right in Washington and its media allies again claim Pakistan is a grave threat to US interests and to Israel. Pakistan must be declawed and dismembered, insist the neocons. Pakistanís nuclear arsenal is reportedly being targeted for seizure or elimination by US Special Forces.

There is also talk in Washington of dividing Afghanistan into Pashtun, Tajik and Uzbek mini-states, as the US has done in Iraq, and perhaps Pakistan, as well. Little states are easier to rule or intimidate than big ones. Many Pakistanis believe the United States is bent on dismembering their nation. Some polls show Pakistanis now regard the United States as a greater enemy than India.

Now that America is in full mid-term election frenzy, expect more calls for tougher US military action in "AfPak." Already unpopular politicians are terrified of being branded "soft on terrorism" and failing to maximally support US military campaigns. Flag waving replaces sober thought.

If polls are right and Republicans achieve a major win, itís likely there will be more and deeper US air and land attacks into Pakistan. The Pentagon is convinced it can still defeat resistance by Taliban and its allies "if only we can go after their sanctuaries in Pakistan," as one general told me.

Where have we heard this before? Why in Cambodia and Laos, thatís where, during the Vietnam War. The frustrated US expanded the war into Cambodia and Laos to go after Communist base camps. The war spread; these two small nations were largely destroyed, but the war was ultimately lost.

Victory in war is achieved by concentration of forces, not spreading them ever thinner and wider.

copyright Eric S. Margolis 2010




 
Report Spam   Logged



Pages: [1] 2   Go Up
  Print  
 
Jump to:  

Powered by EzPortal
Bookmark this site! | Upgrade This Forum
Free SMF Hosting - Create your own Forum

Powered by SMF | SMF © 2016, Simple Machines
Privacy Policy
Page created in 0.09 seconds with 15 queries.